Agenda: Meadham Kirchhoff; The Grinch; Nutcracker; Christmas markets; How To Train Your Dragon


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The Independent Culture

Fashion: Jumpers for jingle belles

If you weren’t convinced by Being Modern’s argument last week that you don’t have to be ironic about Christmas jumpers any more, you can still get involved in the jolliness now that the Meadham Kirchhoff boys have come up with their take on a seasonal sartorial in-joke – choose from unicorns and hearts, each embroidered with a witty slogan from two of London’s hottest young design talents. £75,

Face to watch: The Grinch

One to watch out for at this time of year: though born of Dr Seuss in 1957, he has a tendency to appear in the hearts of misanthropists around now. Treat with kindness and extra-large portions of brandy-soaked Christmas pud

Lexpionage: Forecaught, intrans vb.

The state of being when you are filling up with fuel on the way home on Christmas Eve, only to realise you haven’t bought a present for a member of the family, meaning you’ll have to find something in the petrol-station shop

Social networking: Match the tweet to the star

Santa Claus, Santa Claus, Santa Montefiore, Santa Claus

1. I am not allowed any more mince pies for a couple of days, which is a shame as they are rather scrumptious. #HoHoHo

2. I’ve got the reindeer ready for a fly & we’re all excited about it, so if you see me around it’s just a trial run #HoHoHo

3. Please can you send me your pictures of dodgy Santa impersonators. They make me chuckle. #HoHoHo

4. Joan is one of the only women I know who looks better due to Plastic Surgery.

Answers at the bottom of the page

App watch: Christmas cards

Forgot to send a card to Auntie Lou? Missed the last mail before Crimbo? Don’t panic! Just download the Christmas Card Maker app, create a digital card by adding your own choice of message, festive images and personal photo, and (e)mail it off. And peace shall reign across the family once more! Free from iTunes store

On the yuletide radar: Because some things are still worth getting excited about…

Ballet: Nutcracker

If, like ours, your festive period isn’t complete without an annual trip to see this winter classic, check out the magical choreography of the English National Ballet’s version, performing until 5 January.

Get into the spirit: Christmas markets

A funfair in Bury St Edmunds, a Narnian bar in Nottingham, dance troupes in Plymouth… For last-minute gifts (and festive fun), check out what’s on where at

Television: How To Train Your Dragon

If you haven’t been blessed with a box-set or two in your stocking, this, for our money, is the best film on over the next three days – for kids and adults alike, no less. 5pm, Boxing Day, BBC1

Match the tweet: 1. Santa Claus; 2. Santa Claus; 3. Santa Claus; 4. Santa Montefiore.